Finding Truth by Nancy Pearcey

Finding Truth: 5 Principles for Unmasking Atheism, Secularism, and Other God SubstitutesFinding Truth: 5 Principles for Unmasking Atheism, Secularism, and Other God Substitutes by Nancy Pearcey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Having read Total Truth several years ago and really liking it, I was thankful to receive a copy of Nancy Pearcey’s latest book Finding Truth to review. In this book she discusses 5 principles for testing and defending worldviews.
Using Romans 1 as a guide, that nature reveals God to man and he is without excuse, first of all when dealing with a worldview is to determine what the idol is behind the worldview. What has replaced God in their worldview? “If you press any set of ideas back far enough, eventually you reach an ultimate starting point-something that is taken as the self-existent reality on which everything depends.”
From there, after identifying the idol, reveal the reductionism that is part of that worldview. When humans become something less than human (we are all animals, we are just chemicals processing, etc.), then humanity is reduced and the result becomes destructive. This leads to testing the idol, the worldview, to see how it logically plays out. Worldviews not based on the God of Christianity inevitably break down at some point and become inconsistent with themselves. Showing someone how their worldview contradicts itself can be an eye-opening experience. “When a worldview fails to account for all of reality, what do adherents do? Do they say, ‘I guess my theory has been falsified; I’d better toss it out’? Most people do not give up that easily. Instead they suppress the things that their worldview cannot explain, walling them off into a conceptual area separate from reality…”
After these are done, a case can be made for the Christian worldview, which makes sense with the reality of the world that we live in.
“Churches have an obligation to equip their congregations to answer the questions that inevitably arise from living in a post-Christian society.”
This book provides tools for equipping churches and individuals to have answers to the postmodern, relativistic world that we now live in. Young people today are not prepared for the barrage of worldviews that hit them when they go to college. Though some of the book felt a little over my head, overall it was easily readable and would be an excellent toolbox for Christians to use in responding to those around them with real questions in a world that ignores absolute truth.

*I received a copy of this book free from the publisher David C. Cook in exchange for my review.

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NIV Proclamation Bible Review

NIV Proclamation Bible: Correctly Handling the Word of Truth (Bible Niv)

This Bible’s theme is geared toward those who are teaching and preaching the Word, providing tools to help in better handling the Word of Truth. Each book of the Bible gives an overarching theme and also breaks down the structure or outline of the Book for better preparation in teaching it to others.
One thing I was a bit disappointed in was that there weren’t actual study notes with the Bible’s text, just book introductions and then cross-references included. So I wouldn’t necessarily call it a study Bible per se. However, there are some great articles at the beginning for teachers to help in preparing. Even if you’re not a teacher, these articles are helpful for studying the Bible in greater depth. Some of the articles address determining the overarching theme of the book, how the Bible text relates to theology, and preparing a text for a small group study or one-on-one meeting. It’s helpful to have these articles in the front of the Bible, rather than having to reference several other books for teaching helps while preparing to teach. Other than that, it’s another Bible with cross-references and a concordance.

*I received a copy of this Bible free from the publisher through Booklook Bloggers review program in exchange for my review.

God’s Battle Plan for the Mind Blog Tour

God's Battle Plan for the Mind: The Puritan Practice of Biblical MeditationGod’s Battle Plan for the Mind: The Puritan Practice of Biblical Meditation by David W. Saxton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Meditation for Christians has become a neglected discipline nowadays, often because of the connotation that it has with New Age and Eastern religions. But Biblical meditation is a necessary part of Christian growth and sanctification. In this book, the author goes through what Biblical meditation is NOT to explain how it differs from the world’s idea of meditation. He explains the benefits of meditation and how it is an essential part of a growing Christian’s walk. Using the Puritans and their writings, he gives practical advice for how to meditate and counters excuses that people use for not meditating.

“What does it mean to meditate? It means to think personally, practically, seriously, and earnestly on how the truth of God’s Word should look in life.” Meditation takes the truth of God’s Word and applies it to our lives. “…the believer fills his mind with truth so that his life becomes governed by the attitude of the Savior.”
Today, meditation has all but become non-existent. We live in a busy world filled with so many distractions and taking time to think deeply is not a regular part of most Christians’ lives. Another reason for meditation falling by the wayside is “…a lack of confidence in God’s Word to sufficiently deal with the issues, problems, and temptations that believers face.”

This was an excellent treatise on what Biblical meditation is and is not and the importance it plays for the Christian’s growth. So many gems in this book to take away (I needed to make sure I had a pen handy to underline as I was reading!). This should be required reading for any Christian who desires to grow in their relationship with God. Meditation on God’s Word would also help the growing crisis of Biblical illiteracy that is rampant in America.

Thoughts to consider:
“Whenever any notion or form of spirituality fails to be tied back to the written Word, the end result inevitably tends toward unbiblical mysticism and religious sentimentality. This eventually leads a person to greater darkness rather than light.”

“…Protestants who fail to emphasize biblical meditation because of fear of falling into mysticism are simply overreacting to unbiblical forms of meditation.” I know this is something that I need to work on.

“Because of the depravity of our hearts and tendency to self-deception, the divine testimony of Scripture must always govern our biblical spirituality and meditation.”

“…contemplative prayer is an unbiblical form of meditation that seeks a spiritual experience through some kind of existential encounter with God apart from His written revelation….The contemplative prayer movement seeks to experience God’s voice apart from His written Word. This movement is a product of a larger evangelical departure from an absolute conviction in the sufficiency of Scripture.”

“…biblical meditation does not seek to empty one’s thoughts. Rather, it seeks to fill one’s thoughts with Scripture, fastening them to the objective truths of God’s Word. Rather than seeking to arrive at a plan of self-actualization, biblical meditation seeks to think God’s thoughts after Him. It seeks to grow in appreciation that all of life is lived before a great and mighty God. Biblical meditation realizes that thoughts reveal beliefs.”

“…Christian meditation is the scriptural plan to keep from thoughts that diminish the glory of God.”

*I received a copy of this book free from the publisher Reformation Heritage Books through Cross-Focused Reviews in exchange for my review.